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Had to go back to NCAA 12

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Old 07-14-2019, 07:24 PM   #1
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Had to go back to NCAA 12

I want to preface this by saying that I absolutely love NCAA ‘14. The gameplay and the feel of the college game and strategy is unmatched by any other version IMO.

So with that being said, the challenge in NCAA ‘14 for me is gone. Once you play it enough, no amount of slider adjustment can take away the ability of winning every game if you really want to. Of course you can set house rules and ban plays, but what’s the fun in banning the entire spread option game when that’s what really makes the game fun, at least for me? Also, it’s kinda hard to hold back from doing what I know I can do to win if I’m losing in a game. The whole point in playing is the spirit of competing. And finally, NCAA ‘14 dropped the ball when it comes to the effectiveness of team ratings. Not only can you beat any team regardless of the ratings disparity, but the CPU controlled teams can never seem to take care of their business. Top rated Alabama and Clemson rarely escape the season without 2 or 3 losses. So it was time for me to try something different.

I’ll give Deegeezy credit for this idea since I follow his dynasty report in that section (check it out if you haven’t). He uses NCAA ‘11 for his dynasty reports. But what I’ve noticed is that it’s really a challenge to build a team and compete with the big dogs. He can feel it when he bags a blue chip recruit, and he can really feel it when his top seniors leave. He has only won two National Championships in approximately 20 years, and it has really been an ebb and flow of success.

So it occurred to me that I still have NCAA ‘12 and it’s really just a slightly updated version of ‘11. The idea of trying to build a team rather than being able to compete from jump street intrigues me. So I put in ‘12 and could feel the difference immediately. There will be no shocking Cinderella seasons out of me until my team is strong enough to compete, and I’m loving it. But as with anything, there is always bad with the good. Here are the pros and cons I’ve encountered so far.

Pros:

- You can change the recruiting difficulty up to Heisman so that it’s not as easy to build a team. You really have to utilize the pipeline to your advantage and every commit feels like a relief.

- As I mentioned, the the disparity in teams feels genuine. I started a Dynasty with San Jose State because they were one of the lowest rated teams in the game, and after playing some superior competition, I started wondering if I should’ve picked a better team, lol! Some of my best schemes simply don’t work with my inferior players, and that’s how it should be. Teams like Alabama are rated 99 overall and they play invincible. I consider this a good thing because I should never be able to hang with Bama using any team in the game, let alone beat them. I have to earn it on the recruiting trail as well as on the field.

- Before the implementation of the Infinity Engine in the later versions, the previous engine had lots of the bugs worked out in its final years, at least as far as gameplay goes. So adjusting the sliders to give the players more realistic animations and physical contact is unnecessary.

- This is personal preference, but I like the pre-game introductions in NCAA ‘12 a lot more than ‘14 (I never understood why they showed the two teams actually playing each other before the game even starts, lol!). There is more of a presentation that showcases the schools’ personalities in a better way in ‘12, IMO.

Cons:

- It’s an older version and the overall presentation of ‘14 feels newer and fresher. That’s just how it’s going to be, though. It’s part of the give-and-take. There are outdated logos and such, and you kinda have to ignore that aspect of it, lol! So if you’re thinking ‘14 is getting outdated, imagine two years earlier.

- The feel of the college offense just isn’t there. I’m a huge spread option guy, but it actually puts you at a disadvantage if you want to implement it in ‘12. Shotgun runs were still barely effective back then and unfortunately, to have a really good ground attack, you’re much better served running under center. Couple this with the fact that the game rewards a well-balanced offense, and you find yourself in a league where a pro style offense is disproportionately effective.

- Custom playbook glitch. ‘12 was the year that they brought back custom playbooks, and you weren’t able to erase everything and start from scratch without it glitching and becoming unusable. I know there was a workaround that was discovered, but I haven’t found it again in my recent google travels.

I’m sure there are other pros and cons, but these are the main ones that made me decide to go back to ‘12. Maybe I’ll get tired of it eventually, but I will enjoy taking the time to build a team and succeed in this game.
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Old 07-14-2019, 11:50 PM   #2
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

Try NCAA 14 with fatigue off. Has saved the game for me

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Old 07-15-2019, 10:52 AM   #3
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

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Originally Posted by young22
Try NCAA 14 with fatigue off. Has saved the game for me

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That’s a great way to combat the second half CPU dropoff for sure! I would say that’s the best way to save NCAA 14. I did that a couple years ago, but I figured out how to win consistently that way as well. The games were actually playing out close to the same way every time. There would be maybe one punt per team each game, and it all came down to had the ball in the final minute each time. So I got a little tired of that.

Even with that way of making the CPU tougher to beat, I’m still finding it fun to try NCAA 12 just for a change of pace. Who knows, maybe in time I’ll get tired of ‘12 and be ready to come back to ‘14 after awhile, lol!
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Old 07-15-2019, 12:03 PM   #4
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

Fatigue off, yes. I will also say this, and it might be way off from what you are looking for or what to do. I changed some conferences around, teams and such. I put Mississippi State in one division of SunBelt and UCF in another division of SunBelt. I was Mississippi State dynasty. After a few seasons, we were good, beating teams pretty good. I was in the same boat as you, like man make it tougher. So, I decided to play as UCF against my team. I though I will show my Bulldogs they are too big for their britches. It was a great game. Bulldogs won 14-13, but hard fought. Most fun game I had in awhile. I do the same now that I am at Florida State. Just to keep it real and push my team.
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Old 07-15-2019, 07:01 PM   #5
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

I also went back to '12 recently. Both games are fun and have their own pros and cons, as you mentioned, but I'd definitely have to give the nod to '12 because of the inherent realistic difficulty that '14 just does not have. This gives '12 a huge advantage over '14 as you're able to leave fatigue on and gear any slider changes towards realism instead of a desperate search for that realistic difficulty.

As I said in another thread, '12 Default All-American/Fatigue ON plays almost identical to '14 Default Heisman/Fatigue OFF. The game was unquestionably dumbed-down. As to why that is, I suppose it's debatable, but I think it might have been because of all the complaints about the DBs and LBs in '12, because as I switch back to '12, I say to myself, "Defense from the CPU?!" I honestly don't even understand what people were complaining about back then. I haven't seen a LB jump over a foot/foot-and-a-half yet. You're telling me it isn't realistic for a college LB to have a 18" vertical? Hell, I'm old and out of shape, and I could give you 10 on a bad day. I don't see that many problems on '12. I just call it actual defense.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:10 PM   #6
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

When I popped 12 in for the first time a while back, I realized I found the ncaa I had been searching for. Between that and 06 Im set if they never gave us another one.


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Old 07-16-2019, 01:12 AM   #7
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA 12

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Originally Posted by Tuscaloosa
I also went back to '12 recently. Both games are fun and have their own pros and cons, as you mentioned, but I'd definitely have to give the nod to '12 because of the inherent realistic difficulty that '14 just does not have. This gives '12 a huge advantage over '14 as you're able to leave fatigue on and gear any slider changes towards realism instead of a desperate search for that realistic difficulty.

As I said in another thread, '12 Default All-American/Fatigue ON plays almost identical to '14 Default Heisman/Fatigue OFF. The game was unquestionably dumbed-down. As to why that is, I suppose it's debatable, but I think it might have been because of all the complaints about the DBs and LBs in '12, because as I switch back to '12, I say to myself, "Defense from the CPU?!" I honestly don't even understand what people were complaining about back then. I haven't seen a LB jump over a foot/foot-and-a-half yet. You're telling me it isn't realistic for a college LB to have a 18" vertical? Hell, I'm old and out of shape, and I could give you 10 on a bad day. I don't see that many problems on '12. I just call it actual defense.

I'm also an NCAA 12 guy and I've written up some other comparisons on the forums as well as am running my dynasty report on it, but I will admit I can see where people may have had complaints against pass coverage. Linebackers specifically in this game are insanely good at pass coverage and it can be frustrating when you think you have an open man over the middle or to the outside and the linebackers will read you like a book to bat any ball down that comes within a 10 foot radius of them. But like you said it definitely makes playing offense much more challenging, which in return makes it more rewarding in my opinion. Also in 12 defensive lineman and ends will consistently bat passes down at the line, I never really experienced that in 14.

If you like your games to be difficult and don't expect to put up 500 yards of offense and 40+ points a game, 12 is great. Offense in 14 is more fluid and easier to execute, which I can totally understand why people have more fun with that.
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Old 07-16-2019, 02:35 PM   #8
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Re: Had to go back to NCAA �12

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Originally Posted by TylerHL
I'm also an NCAA 12 guy and I've written up some other comparisons on the forums as well as am running my dynasty report on it, but I will admit I can see where people may have had complaints against pass coverage. Linebackers specifically in this game are insanely good at pass coverage and it can be frustrating when you think you have an open man over the middle or to the outside and the linebackers will read you like a book to bat any ball down that comes within a 10 foot radius of them. But like you said it definitely makes playing offense much more challenging, which in return makes it more rewarding in my opinion. Also in 12 defensive lineman and ends will consistently bat passes down at the line, I never really experienced that in 14.

If you like your games to be difficult and don't expect to put up 500 yards of offense and 40+ points a game, 12 is great. Offense in 14 is more fluid and easier to execute, which I can totally understand why people have more fun with that.
Yeah, I feel like I totally agree with you, but just feel differently about it. To me, the LB coverage on '14 felt basically non-existent. It feels way more realistic in '12, to me. It's subjective, I guess. I fully agree that there do seem to be an inordinate amount of batted passes at the line, but I would also say that it doesn't happen enough in '14. To me, it doesn't happen enough in '12 to be a problem.

I guess that's really the short of it:

You want a more defensive game - go '12.

You want a more wide open offensive game - go '14. And if '14 gets too easy, go back.



Even the graphics are better though. Which brings me to this theory I have...

If you look back at the history of the NCAA franchise (and Madden), every time a new console came around, the last year or two of the last gen edition of the game drastically went down in quality, compared not only to the obvious next gen version of the game, but also to older editions of the game on the very same last gen system. Long story short, I think this is responsible for the many issues on '14. Even if the series hadn't been cancelled, the world was moving on to PS4 and XBone, and all the efforts of the series and team would have went towards those systems, reducing the quality on PS3 and 360. In fact, I wonder how much work got done for next gen '15 before the doors were closed.
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